A uniquely fun and interactive side-show for parties, festivals and  other events where participants can toss, juggle, and fly handmade hula hoops (adult and child sized), juggling sticks, scarves and paper kites to the rhythm of music.  Sue and Debbie, "The Twirling Granny Sisters",  will help you get started.  The environment joyfully energizes focus in a way that encourages full involvement. The activities are challenging, but achievable for everyone. The star of the show is Louie the Hoop Flying Clown and Therapy Dog performing his favorite tricks and making friends with everyone. Gathered wherever there is space for movement, at festivals, parties and other events, we learn to cooperate with the principle of rotational force and  'ease into the successful twirl.   Video below is from Art All Night 2015.  We did not bring the dog that night due to predicted storms and we made kites when it was less crowded that did not make in this video.  Slideshow at right highlights more of what we do. 



We are listed as entertainers at 


Sue Bertomeu Albert (aka Granny Sue) has presented choice-based learning and therapeutic play environments at countless school and community events since she began The Learning Arcade more than 20 years ago. She has devoted more than 25 years working as a Bibliographic Specialist at Princeton University Library and to 'life long learning' research and experimentation on delinquency prevention through play. Louie, the Hoop Flying Clown Healer Beagle is a certified Bright and Beautiful therapy dog. Since 2011, he has regularly lifted spirits with nursing home visits. In 2012, Sue and Louie joined the World Clown Association as members eligible for liability insurance.


Contact Sue by phone 609-577-7053 
or email twirlingarcade@gmail.com


Debbie Bertomeu (aka Aunt Debbie) is a talented artist/crafter and the caring person who was persuaded by Sue's son, Andrew, to adopt Louie after she came to Princeton to live in 2008.  He was therapeutic for everyone before ever becoming an 'official' therapy dog.   Debbie's struggle to 'fit in' that began in grammar school, led to some difficulties later in life. Louie's super friendly personality helped her to explore creative projects, including macrame wall hangings, twirling sticks, hula hoops,  and painting.  She stays busy making  props, painting and helping out at Twirling Arcade events. 


Contact Debbie by phone 910-622-0977

The idea for The Twirling Arcade was first inspired by teachers at  the elementary school that Sue and Debbie attended. When she was in first grade, the teachers asked Sue for help to  understand how to reach Debbie as a learner.  At the time, she was too young to know how to help, but the challenge motivated a life-long passion to create fun learning environments that engage creative, energetic children like Debbie once was, with challenging play and educational activities. 

The choices we offer based, in part, on a theory of 'redirecting behavior through empowering play' (we are still in touch with the author of this interesting theory Sue learned about in 1995)  that help bring people of all ages and most abilities together through movement, music, crafts and  tricks performed by Louie, whose happy disposition and entertaining behavior have earned him many fans at the nursing home he has visited regularly since early 2011. 

 Most  of the Twirling Arcade activities evolved from what was most popular at The Learning Arcade program, which Sue began in in 1995, when information technology was just emerging as a new skill to be mastered.  Motivated by observation of her stepson (who went on to become a psychiatrist) and his friends solving problems and beating levels, collaboratively, while playing video games as teens; her program began as a collection of creative, cooperative and technology-assisted play/learning activities designed to promote peaceful interactions through empowering play.